Thursday 6 December 2012

Very cold out with snow on the ground at the east end of the line but otherwise uneventful apart from the gentleman who had obviously had a good night out, either at a Bill Bailey look-a-like contest or an after production party for extras from “The Hobbit”.   He stumbled off the train at FAI with the immediately recognisable look of someone who had no idea where they were and did a complete 180 degree spin before staggering off towards the exit.  That pirouette would have been impressive on its own but with the addition of his long beard trailing in the air like some hairy streamer it achieved a level of artistic grace.
Sad news that Dave Brubeck has passed on.  He grew up on a cattle ranch in California and originally was going to become a vet before switching to music at college.  After graduating in 1942 he was drafted and while serving under Patton in Europe formed the US Army’s first mixed race jazz band.  On his return to the US continued to oppose racial segregation and in 1958 refused to tour South Africa when asked to do so with an all-white band. 

In 1959 his quartet recorded the Cool Jazz masterpiece “Time Out”, the first jazz album to sell over a million copies and when “Take Five” was released as a single it reached no. 25 on the Billboard chart.  Quite possibly you’ve heard “Take Five” without knowing it was Brubeck but if you’ve never listened to “Time Out” then go forth and educate yourself.

And on the subject of music a quick plug for Nadean and Christopher’s “open deck” night at The Star on Bethnal Green Road; vinyl only, turn up, put your name down, wait your turn and play your five tracks.  Turn up early enough and you might get to hear some 80s/90s indie classics spun by some train drive fellow before he heads off to work……..


  1. "did a complete 180" & "immediately recognisable look of someone who had no idea"

    A member of the cabinet, possibly?

  2. The Rt. Hon Thorin Oakenshield, Member of Parliament for The Lonely Mountain North?

    PS “The Hobbit” is infinitely superior to Lord of the Rings.

  3. The film? I've not seen it yet. I was slightly put off by the trailer's depiction of Martin Freeman's unconvincing fooling around. I've been told elsewhere that his acting is not as bad as the trailer makes out!

  4. The film?!?!?! I'm talking about the book!

  5. Oh! Well, I know the film's not out in the UK yet, but you never know who has seen it already.

    I found the language and style of writing in the Hobbit less developed than LOTR and not as rich in descriptive imagery, but (1) I read LOTR before the Hobbit and (2) it was written for a younger audience anyway - I believe it emerged from the bed time stories he used to make up for his children. Still a cracking read mind you, far better than much that is being churned out today. And then you get The Silmarillion, which is a snorefest of the highest order! God help us if that turn that into a film.

    PS, I played The Hobbit adventure game before I read LOTR. You know, the one that ran on a mainframe and was text only.

  6. My feelings are that the "The Hobbit" is one of the greatesy childen's books ever written and when you are older you can look back and say I want my kids reading that whereas LotR is a book that when you look back at it you think why was I reading that when I could have been reading Dickens or Tolstoy or Austen. Or Hunter S Thompson......

  7. If you go on strike again you really will be a bunch of scumbags!!